Wednesday 22 May 2013

Avoiding the wetland stuff

The 22nd May and despite dropping into likely wet localities, the lack of wader habitat away from the over-watched GLE pit and the lack of proper tern migration have limited my SFYL additions so far this month to three - Turtle Dove, Gropper (that was a struggle too) and Hobby. A fair way below expectations but the big one is more likely as the end of the month approaches…glass half full and all that… 
make mine a Wherry !

 One of five Hobbies perched up on snags in the middle of Coronation pit while looking for Redfoots

Stewartby Lake - any morning in late April or May you like - look no terns, no little gulls, no birds in fact

Friday 17 May 2013


Knowing peoples love of 'record' shots, I thought you'd like this one.  Two Avocets at Gypsy Lane today.

Wednesday 15 May 2013

2 by 2

Two Whimbrel flew over GLE last night and two new Turnstones turned up there this morning.  After days of seeing very little at Broom this last 24 hours have been rather good!

It was a great sight to see a flock of three Turnstones, 24 Ringed Plovers, six LRPs, and two Redshanks all running round the mud together this morning.  I was however, a little gripped by Mr Warrens Sanderling which must have turned up just after Id left for work. Its ok though, Ive already SFYLd that one.

Monday 13 May 2013

Prrr Prrr

Driving into the scrapyard corner pull off at Stewartby in the vague hope of finding a Turtle Dove, it was a real surprise to see two doves and a Wood Pigeon fly up from the gravelly road side and disappear over the hedge towards the lake side path. My immediate thought that they were Turtle Doves was doubted when I realised I was wearing my shades for driving on the sun and knowing there was a pair of Collared Doves on the corner the previous week. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, it was time for a walk and five minutes later they were on the list, one even coming down into the scrub 10m in front of me above the ditch. I must admit that I was not expecting to get TD on my SFYL for 2013.

Sunday 12 May 2013

Local Patch Ton

The first Swifts of the year over Poppy Hill Lakes brought up the 100 species for my Henlow Grange local patch (roughly the area west of the East Coast Main Line railway with the A507 to the south and Langford to the north). The hundred arrived some five months earlier than last year with some pleasant surprises along the way top of which must be the singing Wood Warbler that was present one morning although my favourite is the male Redstart, perched on a fence where I have been expecting to see one since we moved to Henlow (10-years ago now!).
My first local Cuckoo, calling from the back of Poppy Hill Lakes, added another to the patch total and does not leave many more regular species to find. I wonder what the rest of the year will turn up.


Tuesday 7 May 2013

Not worthy...

So, we go to GLE today, safe in the knowledge that whatever we see on a lunchtime visit will be added to both our SFYLs, but as this bloomin' Osprey was above us and he was looking up, I don't think I can claim it.  Shame.  Here he is, grinning knowing he's got a good one in the bag.  And you can see the Osprey too.

Monday 6 May 2013

Mattyboy bags a triple!

At this time of year getting 3 in a day gets pretty hard. But today Broom yielded a trio of terrifics.
Whimbrel, Barwit and Little Gull all bagged, without another SFYLer in sight. Blain was skulking around GLE  and The 'Reaper' had made a serious schoolboy error and ended up in Warwickshire for the weekend.
Bring on that Wader Cup!!

Thursday 2 May 2013

I love chats

Poking around at the weekend, I managed to find a Nightingale that sang a few chook-chooks in Coronation Pit before I played my phone at it and got a full long repertoire of song. Nice SFYT and always fantastic to listen to, if not to look at. For good looks though you can’t do much better than a male Whinchat, unfortunately one seen on Tuesday was a bit distant as one of two found while twitching a bird reported by Dave Odell, (not having that one as a SFYT). Then, and a similar stunning looker, I found a stonking male Redstart on Pegsdon this evening which showed really nicely feeding in the sun and giving me the opportunity to capture an image worthy of this blog with bins in one hand, camera in the other and both a foot in front of my face…
I love chats.